"If you are going on a cruise this summer, cancel your vacation, or if you must go, hold it in for the length of the cruise."


Having never been on a cruise, all I can envision is Kathy Lee belting out chorus lines while guests sip drinks in tiki glasses full of fruit and baby umbrellas. The dark side to cruising, including grey- and blackwater, is that the cruise lines don't always like to treat the water like they do their paying guests [see "Cruise Control," May 10, and "Cruise Dumps," p. 11 this issue]. Not only did Royal Caribbean Ltd. just dump its untreated wastewater; September 16, 1998, the Coast Guard spotted a 7-mile long oil slick by the Nordic Empress, [and] they lied about it. In 1998, according to the DOJ, "the Miami sentencing was for one phase of an investigation that uncovered an array of environmental crimes related to Royal Caribbean's fleetwide conspiracy." Within the last four weeks, two cruise ship have been caught discharging greywater in the Northwest, Holland America and Norwegian Cruise Lines.

The truth is, owners of these cruise ships are not good corporate citizens. Therefore, my advice: If you are going on a cruise this summer, cancel your vacation, or if you must go, hold it in for the length of the cruise—quite a biological feat for a seven-day cruise!

Stephen Miller



This review ["Fair Abuse," The Wind Done Gone, May 10] was among the most prejudicial and unfair articles I have read in several years. This guy obviously has an axe to grind and appears to be using the "review" as an excuse to project his bigoted views of the South. I resent it. It is one of my most fond dreams to get one of these silly little SOB writers in a public debate and kick their ass. But alas, most are like this fool who writes is [sic] words and then goes and hides behind his editor's skirts.

Philip D. Hodgens

Chelsea, Ala.


Great article on the death penalty ["The Case for Timothy McVeigh,"Geov Parrish, May 10]! I've been a public defender for 10 years, and I could not agree with you more that the ONLY rationale for the death penalty is vengeance. However, most American Christians are not for the death penalty, as you suggest. Bud Welch, whom you favorably quote, is against the death penalty and he's Catholic. The Catholic Church and numerous Protestant denominations actively oppose the death penalty. Sister Helen Prejean continues to advocate against state-sanctioned murder.

The fact that our incoherent president spouts his faith incoherently— as you pointed out, Bush claims to be against murder and has also presided over dozens of murders as governor of Texas—is just another proof of the deep doo-doo we're in (again). His smiling face and vengeful heart say nothing about what American Christians think about the death penalty.

Otherwise, great article.

Keep it up!

Andy Simons



You've done it again; you've let that idiot make your otherwise excellent publication look ridiculous. Why do you publish Mr. Parrish's mindbendingly stupid rants? He claims [in "The Case for Timothy McVeigh," Geov Parrish, May 10] that there is "no good reason for the death penalty—not moral, not legal, not preventative, none." Let's run down his little list, shall we?

(1) Moral (as in Right and Wrong). If there was any moral justification for killing, it would be to prevent further killing. Anyone who reads the paper knows that there's nobody more likely to kill than someone who's already done it once before. The public has a moral right to protect itself by stopping a murderer from killing again. Period.

(2) Legal. I really don't think there's any clear definition of a "legal reason," so this is nothing more than mindless ranting. As long as it's legal for the state to kill a murderer, that's good enough for me.

(3) Preventative. What better way to prevent a murderer from killing again than to kill him? And those unnamed studies Mr. Parrish refers to were probably conducted in the current context; a society that refuses to kill those that deserve death quickly and efficiently, with a reasonably small number of appeals. So we really don't know if the death penalty is "preventative", do we? In fact, with the lengthy appeals process, can we honestly say we even HAVE a death penalty? More like an "appeals" penalty, isn't it? Please, get a clue and drop this knee-jerk liberal psycho from your staff before he does even more damage.

Scott Hill



A new 24-story tower is called "a defeat for both the rich and poor of Belltown" by Rick Anderson [News Clips, "News Flash! Belltown to Get More Condos," May 10], who doesn't explain his thinking but notes that the project was opposed by neighbors who didn't want the tower to block their views.

If Rick is assuming we've all come to an agreement that private views have achieved the same status as wetlands or endangered species, something so significant in value to the community as a whole as to require the intervening hand of government in the housing market, then I must dissent.

If private views are to become fully ensconced as rights, we can kiss good-bye any hope of seeing moderating housing prices in the city or any reduction in the pressures forcing urban sprawl.

Ed Newbold



". . . it's best when you do the least to it: Sauces and other flavors just get in the way of the unctuous texture and heady sea aroma released at the first bite" [Side Dish, "Copper River Madness," May 10]. Finally someone acknowledges the taste is there, don't change it! I love Copper River King cooked with just a little butter, if anything, and it drives me crazy when it is served in sauces that destroy the wonderful flavor.

Thanks for expressing this very true fact, I hope everyone I dine with reads and believes it.


via e-mail


I found your cilantro-pierced-tongue cover [Dining Issue, April 26] really distasteful. Self-mutilation is a pathetic cry for help; there is nothing sexy or artistic about it. I enjoy reading your magazine and wish you would not bother trying to compete with other sleaze-oriented publications. Why not try to occupy a classier niche? The Dategirl column [every darn week! This issue, page 135!] is another example of the Seattle Weekly's recent decline. (That column tends to just make me feel sorry for the author, with her misguided notions about sexual liberation.) I hope your 25th anniversary will provide a chance for you to reevaluate the aims of the Seattle Weekly, and the audience you aspire to reach. Seriously, you can be classy and still be cool.


via e-mail

Letters cried after mail call this week. Write to Letters Editor, Seattle Weekly, 1008 Western, Ste 300, Seattle, WA 98104; fax to 206-467-4377; or e-mail to letters@seattleweekly.com. Please include name, location, and phone number. Rarely do we print anonymous letters. Letters may be edited.

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